New figures on cycling in London show ‘appetite for cycling’ is at near-Dutch levels, says British Cycling

New figures on cycling in London show ‘appetite for cycling’ is at near-Dutch levels, says British Cycling

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A new census of cycling in London has also shown that Theobolds Road in Holborn is London’s most popular cycling street with bikes making up 64% of vehicles in the morning peak. Kennington Park Road and Old Street recorded that around half of all vehicles using the road at peak times are bicycles.

Commenting on the news, British Cycling’s Director of Legal and Policy Affairs, Martin Gibbs, said:

“These figures show that the appetite for commuting by bike in London is now almost at the level seen in great cycling cities like Copenhagen and Amsterdam. But anyone who has cycled in London and Amsterdam will know that there's a big difference, so the potential is huge in London where conditions remain a long way off the standard many of our European neighbours enjoy. These results underline the urgent need for the government and local authorities nationwide to put cycling at the heart of transport policies and to put right the wrongs done over the past few decades in designing roads purely for motorised vehicles.

Theobolds Road in Holborn is London’s most popular cycling street with bikes making up 64% of vehicles in the morning peak.

London cycling census figures

“The Mayor and Transport for London are publicly committed to prioritising cycling in the capital as part of a near £1 billion investment - and it’s no coincidence that this had led to increased numbers of people being confident enough to get on their bikes. There is no reason why we can’t see similar results in other cities and towns nationwide and I’d encourage more councils to take some brave decisions on cycling.”

Releasing the figures, Boris Johnson’s Cycling Commissioner, Andrew Gilligan, said:

“Until recently, cycling in London was seen as faintly marginal. These amazing figures show those days are over. In the morning rush hour, no fewer than 38,000 people enter the centre by bike. The bicycle is a mass mode of transport — and an indispensable one.

“But bike provision in London still largely reflects the old idea of cyclists as a tiny, irrelevant minority. Cyclists are wedged into narrow, sometimes dangerous painted strips or onto shared-space schemes on pavements. The old view was that you could only do things for bikes that didn’t affect motor vehicles in any way.

“Our plans won’t mean colossal reductions in space for motor traffic. Bikes are efficient users of road space. But it will mean some reductions, simply to cater for what’s already happening on our roads.”

“Join us: you have nothing to lose but your trains. And you’ll always get a seat.”

Central London Cycle Census results - June 2013 (PDF)